the lessons we learn from our parents

As a young child we look up to our parents. They are there for us when we fall. They encourage us when we make mistakes. And they always seem to know what to do.

Some of us see our parents as superheroes. They seem invincible.

But they’re not.

One day the day will come when we will no longer have our parents around.

They will be gone and we are forced to face the world without them. And while we are all mortal; our ideas can live on in books, in our children, and in friends.

Ideas can be immortal.

With that thought in mind, I thought today that I’d take the time to appreciate all the lessons that I was taught by my parents.

Many, if not all, of these ideas will be passed on down to my son in hopes that he will share them with his children.

So just what did I learn from my parents?

  1. Respect is earned, not given.
  2. To stand up for yourself.
  3. To treat people kindly.
  4. Not to be afraid to ask.
  5. Be willing to admit your mistakes.
  6. Open your mind to new cultures.
  7. Dinner time is family time.
  8. Family comes first.
  9. It’s ok to cry.
  10. Laughter is the best medicine.
  11. Be polite.
  12. Tell the truth.
  13. Accept responsibility for your actions.
  14. Poverty is a state of mind.
  15. Wealth doesn’t define you.
  16. Listen to your elders.
  17. Eat properly.
  18. Your word is your bond. (Don’t make promises you can’t keep)
  19. Be strict but kind.
  20. Be fair.

My father may be gone and I can no longer seek his consul. But these lessons, and more, remain.

Some of them were harder to learn but I am grateful that my parents took the time to educate me in the ways of the world.

Parents don’t always get it right. But even when they make mistakes we can learn from it. We can learn what NOT to do.

In the end, we are the ones responsible for our own futures. Our parents merely get us started.

It’s up to us to finish the race.

So the next time you see your mother or father give them a big hug and say, “Thanks for everything.”

You never know when it’ll be the last.

Adrian Shepherd

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